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Exercise Safety Tip: Make Eye Contact

I recently polled you guys about skipping workouts due to not feeling safe, and a few of you mentioned being worried about getting hit by a car.

Motorists can be distracted and forget to pay attention for people crossing the street as well as other vehicles. So one thing that I do when I am jogging around my neighborhood is to always (always, always) make eye contact with the motorist before crossing the street in front of him or her at a stop sign or light. This is the only way to be assured that they actually see me and are waiting to let me cross. Usually, the person behind the wheel will then wave me through after making the eye contact, which is the best scenario in my opinion. As a courtesy, I wave back so that the communication is followed through. The fact of the matter is that unless I get that eye contact, I don't cross. The momentary pause in my exercise is not worth the possibility of getting hit by a car.

Fit's Tip: Having had a family member hit by a car and killed when crossing the street, I would suggest adding this practice into your everyday life, not just when exercising.

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appreciated appreciated 8 years
It gets pretty hectic sometimes. Even when other drivers are letting CARS into the lane other drivers might not see why they're braking and continue to drive then hit the other car...or person. (Think if someone is turning left across 2 lanes and the first lane stops but the far right one doesn't.) I've seen it happen many times...fortunately nobody was hit or hurt in any but you can see it coming. Definetly eye contact is important.
allisonblue allisonblue 8 years
Drivers are SO careless at cross streets, especially coming out of residential areas -- my pet peeves are when they pull out over crosswalks, or drive across bike lanes without regard for the bikers in them. When I'm on my bike, I always make eye contact -- and I'm not afraid to show when I get pissed off!
KimBurnett KimBurnett 8 years
Eye contact is a great idea. I am very sorry that happened to your family member, Fit. In general though I find that when I am walk/running for fitness, the men oogle and the women are rude: not stopping in cross walks, not waiting for me to walk by when pulling out of their driveways and I'm right there etc. ...and no I do not wear revealing cloting. I just think there is jealous coming from these women and perviness from the men. So many weirdos. Is anybody else experiencing this or is it just me and my town(in New Jersey) is full of idiots.
Spectra Spectra 8 years
I'm really sorry to hear that, Fit. I myself have had too many close calls with people who don't watch. Mostly, it's people that are backing out of their driveways and just don't watch for people on the sidewalk. I also once got my foot run over by a truck that was pulling out of a drive thru. She almost stopped and I thought I was safe to go across and she just kept going, rolling right over my foot and I lost my balance and fell and scraped my knee. I was so pissed...I yelled at her and said "What if I had been a kid? You could've seriously hurt me!" The driver was pretty much speechless and said "I just didn't see you" (which I attribute to the fact that she was staring at her fries and not watching the road). But yeah, usually if you make eye contact with drivers, they'll stop for you.
Soniabonya Soniabonya 8 years
Sorry for your loss Fit. It's hard to make eye contact when you already in the crosswalk and an idiot driver careens around the corner like a dimbat. I have nearly been hit several times walking home from school. When I wait at a crosswalk for my grren guy, I always make eye contact to let the driver know that I am there.
nikodarling nikodarling 8 years
So sad that these things have to happen. I hate to say it but when it comes to drivers you should always assume the worst. Just because you have the right of way doesn't mean they will stop for you.
Lovely_1 Lovely_1 8 years
Awww sorry fit :( It's so true though, espeically in large cities, pedestrians have to be very cautious.
suzanne suzanne 8 years
I had a family member hit by a car and killed when the motorist waved her on. A car came from the next lane and hit her. So tragic - she was a young mother pushing a stroller. Be sure there's no car coming in the other lane!
aimeeb aimeeb 8 years
Sorry for your loss :(
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